Certified Medical Billing/Coding Specialist Salary
Job Description for Certified Medical Billing/Coding Specialist
A certified medical billing/coder specialist is a skilled medical worker who functions in an office-based setting to interpret official medical records into codes which can be submitted to insurance companies for payment. The certified medical billing/coder specialist must be skilled in understanding medical terminology and searching the medical provider's documentation to identify all diagnoses, conditions, reasons for treatment, services and procedures recorded, and to assign the appropriate billing code to each. The codes determine the amount that the physician is paid for his or her services. The codes are contained in the medical records coder "bibles," the ICD-9 and CPT-4 books. Working as a certified medical billing/coder specialist requires a strong background not only in medical terminology, but also in anatomy and physiology, pharmacology, computer and typing skills, billing, and accounting. Certified medical billing/coder specialist students also complete a hands-on practicum prior to graduating. Certified medical billing/coder specialist programs are offered as diploma or degree programs. Upon graduation, the coder must take and pass a national certification exam. Certified medical billing/coder specialists work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, outpatient and inpatient clinics, surgical centers, and dental offices. Any place that provides medical services requires the services of a certified medical billing/coder specialist. Certified medical billing/coder specialists work in conjunction with physicians and other medical providers and, in addition to coding services, provide education to providers regarding medical record requirements and conduct chart reviews for completeness. Certified medical billing/coder specialists have the ability to make their own schedule, and with telecommuting can even work at home.
Certified Medical Billing/Coding Specialist Tasks
- Record and process patient data including treatment records, insurance information, bills, and payments.
- Set-up payment plans for patients.
- Organize and verify patient records, bills, and statements.
- Code patients' diagnoses and requests payment from insurance companies or individuals.
Common Career Paths for Certified Medical Billing/Coding Specialist
Certified Medical Billing Specialists may experience a large salary bump if they progress into a role such as Medical Coding Auditor. The latter position pays an average of $50K annually. When Certified Medical Billing Specialists are ready for the next step in their careers, they often become Certified Professional Coders or Medical Coders. Those roles pay an additional $4K and $3K, respectively.
Medical Billing/Coding Specialist Job Listings
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Popular Skills for Certified Medical Billing/Coding Specialist
Survey results suggest that Certified Medical Billing Specialists use a fairly large toolkit of professional skills. Most notably, skills in Current Procedural Terminology Coding, International Statistical Classifications of Diseases - 9 Coding, International Statistical Classifications of Diseases - 10 Coding, and Accounts Receivable are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts in pay of 9 percent. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Claim Handling. A tool kit that includes Medical Coding also typically contains Medicaid & Medicare Billing and Insurance. The majority of those who know Billing also know Insurance and Medicaid & Medicare Billing.
Pay by Experience Level for Certified Medical Billing/Coding Specialist
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For Certified Medical Billing Specialists, level of experience appears to be a somewhat less important part of the salary calculation — more experience does not correlate to noticeably higher pay. Survey participants with less than five years' experience pocket $31K on average, but those with five to 10 years of experience enjoy a much bigger median of $36K. Certified Medical Billing Specialists claiming one to two decades of experience make an estimated median of $40K. Respondents who claim more than 20 years of experience may encounter pay that doesn't quite reflect their extensive experience; these veterans report a median income of around $41K.
Pay Difference by Location
With a pay rate for Certified Medical Billing Specialists that is 35 percent greater than the national average, Minneapolis offers a comfortable salary for those in this profession. Certified Medical Billing Specialists can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Jacksonville (+18 percent), Chicago (+11 percent), Tampa (+9 percent), and New York (+9 percent). St. Louis ranks last in the field for pay, reporting salaries 8 percent below the national average. Employers in Houston and Los Angeles also lean toward paying below-median salaries (7 percent lower and 3 percent lower, respectively).
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Key Stats for Certified Medical Billing/Coding Specialist
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 122 votes.